oh happy day, parts seven and eight

shipment #7 and …

shipment #8!

Wonderful partners…
The most prevalent theme that comes to mind when I think of you all these days is partnership. Together we’ve sent two shipments to Juarez this summer, the second of which headed south just two weeks ago and made it safely across the border. (The first one went at the beginning of July, thanks to my willing and helpful husband.) Without any organized school programs or church reminders or any requests from me at all, you have fed and clothed the babies of Juarez. I am astonished to see how you have served these people and this cause in such grand display. From Voila Tans in Highlands Ranch holding a diapers and formula drive to our family friend using his lemonade/pizza stand proceeds to buy supplies. I could go on and on with stories like these. My dear friend held a garage sale and gave me ALL the money to buy formula. A Kindergarten class at Cherry Hills auctioned off a quilt and gave me the proceeds to buy supplies. A faithful friend continues to buy formula every time she goes to WalMart and drops it on my porch. My cousin in Ohio just sent a check and coupons. Precious friends continue to buy supplies monthly in honor and memory of a beloved son they lost many years ago now. We get so many anonymous drop-offs that I don’t get to place a face with the gift, but how deep is my gratitude. People, I have tears in my eyes and a major lump in my throat when I recall this partnership and your sweet faithfulness. Thank you for jumping on board and feeding these babies. My heart literally wants to burst with the very best kind of pride when I think of you and what you’re joining together to accomplish.
I’ll take a deep breath and get back to some updates. Whew. Things are going well in Juarez. The missionaries continue to distribute supplies just as quickly as we get them down there. We just heard from two of the missionaries who are in Juarez full-time that these supplies are continuing to make a major impact. They constantly have their eyes open for babies having nothing but water in their bottles for the opportunity to give them nourishment and a chance to live. Without it, many of these babies would simply fade away. The government isn’t set up to help them and many have absolutely no means to buy formula, so the help they’re receiving from our shipments is crucial.
On a very positive note, we have dear friends that run a non-profit organization established to support an orphanage in Brazil. They have graciously offered to take the babies of Juarez project under its wing. I’ve received several quotes for setting up 501(c)(3) status of my own, but the costs were too extraordinary. And to hold up our commitment that every dollar given goes to buy diapers and formula, this just wasn’t feasible for us personally. This doesn’t change the way we do things much and our primary focus is still very much collecting the actual supplies. However, for those who occasionally (or regularly – thank you, mom and Mauri) send money for me to buy diapers and formula on your behalf, you’ll now receive the tax benefit. Simply make your check out to “The Shepherd’s Way” and every nickel will be spent at whatever store has the best deal on diapers and formula at the moment.
Okay, enough with the business side of things. Our family is currently making plans to head down with a team at the end of October and I’ve envisioned an enormous load of diapers and formula going down with us. I honestly can’t wait to get my hands on those babies and return home with wonderful stories for you and an even greater heart for this project. Stay tuned to see what God’s going to do with this next shipment. I am almost breathless with anticipation.
With tremendous gratitude,

oh happy day, parts five and six

shipment #5 and…

shipment #6!

See how good you are?! The fifth load was our largest yet and the sixth was quickly piggy-backed on the fifth with supplies going over the border to Juarez in many different intervals. I continue to be in awe of how God moves in people’s hearts to prompt them to give to these babies. Just when I think we have another lull and maybe people are becoming disinterested with the project, we are flooded with supplies. Cherry Hills Pre-School has gotten involved in a big way. Red Robin and Coca Cola marketing departments contributed heavily this go-round. And my dear friends and family continue to collect and/or buy supplies regularly. I am so humbled by your willingness to partner with me and help these precious babies. We’ve heard incredible things from Juarez about how God is using the supplies. In the mission clinic they have literally witnessed a complete shift in the patients seen. They’ve gone from almost all babies and a few adults, to primarily adults. The missionaries believe this is due to the nutrition provided by the formula and the overall hygiene provided from clean diapers. Honestly, how awe-inspiring is this?

It motivates me mightily to press on. The goal this summer is to reach out to local hospitals and pediatricians to request their expired formula. If you’re the praying kind, I would appreciate you asking God to open the doors wide. Getting their involvement is key to continuing this project for years to come, literally turning what’s headed for the trash into life for the babies in need. If that isn’t a picture of what God does in our own lives, I don’t know what is!

We also plan to have a Web site up and running in the next few months, so people will be able to view my past shipment notes and pictures of each load of supplies. This is also a monumental thing in terms of widening the area we can reach to find people who may be inclined to participate.

The other picture attached is of Pastor Jesus receiving supplies for the needs of the people in his community. After the fourth load went across the border, we received these words from missionary Jeff along with the picture:
“Chris drove down the shipment of diapers and formula yesterday to bring over on the bus last night with the new team. When we arrived at the team center, Pastor Jesus had been waiting for us, praying we would have more diapers and formula. We loaded his truck with his portion of the supplies within minutes, and they were in the field. We thought you would enjoy this photo. Thank you for your continuing work and love for the babies of Juarez.”

a portion of Matthew 25 from “The Message”
“When he finally arrives, blazing in beauty and all his angels with him, the Son of man will take his place on his glorious throne. Then all the nations will be arranged before him and he will sort the people out, much as a shepherd sorts out sheep and goats, putting sheep to his right and goats to his left.
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.’

“Then those ‘sheep’ are going to say, ‘Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?’ Then the King will say, ‘I’m telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.’

May God bless you for taking care of his babies in Juarez.

oh happy day, part four…

Life is good when God is in it…

Yesterday, the fourth load made its way to the babies of Juarez. When Chris called to let us know he was going down, Dusty and I both kind of thought to ourselves, “Well, we just don’t have a whole lot for him this time.” It was just so recently the third round left our home. And then the flood gates opened. I literally left the house one more morning with an entirely empty car and by 9:00 p.m. that night it was filled to the top. Small loads on our front porch started arriving, adding up to a whole lot of help for the Juarez people. And then Amy, you capped off the abundance with your drop-off a few hours prior to the supplies being handed over to Chris. Our mouths were hanging open in joy and wonder at what had accumulated in such a short amount of time.

To give you some insight into the receiving end…here’s a portion of a note from Jeff, one of the missionaries stationed in Juarez. (He’s our contact for physically getting the supplies to the churches.)
“We have never had such a good supply of diapers and formula here in Juarez. I have turned away many hopeful mothers and babies for formula over the years. It’s some of the very sad times here. I believe that when Jesus speaks in Matthew 25:40 “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me” Jesus takes every deed very personal, every soul, every baby, every time. This is not the stuff written in books, it’s in His heart. I live here and I will have to wait to see every baby of Juarez in heaven with you. Infant mortality has been reduced due to your efforts here, don’t wonder.”

I don’t know how many more ways I can say thank you, but I promise I’ll find some! This project has been a gift – to my family and most certainly to the babies of Juarez. Thank you for your above-and-beyond efforts on behalf of these children. It is making a difference. And with the full amount of cheerleader I have in me, which to be honest isn’t much, I say, “Keep it coming!” Chris tells me they’re giving out the supplies as quickly as we can get them down. He and his coworker were laughing the other day thinking they certainly never thought part of their ministry would entail hauling diapers and formula over the border. Kind of makes you wonder what else God has in store for us. More than we can possibly imagine, I’m thinking.

Thank you for your partnership. I am forever grateful…


Just a quick side note — for those of you who started this journey with me may be growing weary of my shipment notes. Hopefully I never lose my enthusiasm for what God is doing in this project, so I can’t promise I’ll stop sending them when supplies are headed south. If you would like to be removed from this list, please just let me know. It’s not my goal to inundate anyone and I promise it won’t hurt my feelings if you’d rather not receive these updates. And for those of you just joining, I’d be happy to send you the past notes if you’re interested in getting an idea of what has been sent to Juarez since January and pictures of the babies being helped. It’s really the most amazing thing!

oh happy day, part three…

If you ever have one of those days, weeks, or months when you wonder if God loves people or whether or not he’s active in his care for us, I invite you to join me on a “pick-up day.”  We now store the collection in our basement until it’s time to send supplies to Juarez, so that means I haul everything upstairs when I’ve heard from Chris that it’s time for another load to go. What incredibly joyful work it is – I can’t even describe it. With every trip up the stairs, wearing an ear-to-ear grin, I am reminded how God tangibly provides what we need. In our table discussion at Sunday school last week it was mentioned how God can do anything he wills without the slightest help from us. We reminded each other God honestly doesn’t need us at all. But in his great love he invites us to be part of what he’s doing. Thank you all for joining this work and contributing to the pile you see in the attached picture. And for those of you just joining this email list having not seen the previous pictures, the collection shown was created in only 16 days. Honestly, it makes me want to laugh out loud in utter amazement!

The pictures of Berta, Flor, and Nora show some of the babies receiving supplies from this project. The pictures were taken while formula and diapers were being distributed after a church service. Oh how I love that the diapers and formula are being given out by the local church – what a concrete display that the help comes from God.

This shipment went down Friday of last week and was transported over the border with no issue. Make no mistake about it, God intends to feed and comfort these dear babies. Oh happy day…

With great appreciation,


oh happy day, part two…

Greetings everyone!

I couldn’t be more thrilled to let you know that the second* big load of diapers and formula is headed to Juarez today. (*The second of many loads to come! You wouldn’t believe the pile already forming for load number three…) What a beautiful thing! I’ve had this lump in my throat since early this morning as I consider how God is providing for the babies of Juarez through you. It has been a privilege and a joy to work with every one of you. Thank you so much for your heart for this project and your time and energy to get these babies fed and comfortable. It has meant more to me than any words could possibly express. Please take a look at the attached pictures for an idea of what was collected in LESS THAN four weeks. I don’t know how else to say it, but you people rock!

The first shipment arrived safely in Juarez at the beginning of January and within one day had been distributed to the area churches and women’s shelter for distribution. Not only that but in no time at all the formula and diapers were in the hands, in the mouths, and on the bottoms of those who desperately needed the supplies.

This picture of “Katherine” is a glimpse into the help you’ve provided. Katherine is two and a half months old. Her mother is breastfeeding, but can’t produce enough milk to nourish Katherine. The missionary told me there was a noticeable, night-and-day difference in Katherine’s demeanor when she was given formula—as though her body was breathing a sigh of relief and taking every ounce of it in. The missionary has promised to provide more stories and pictures as he has opportunity and this work continues. He has been overwhelmed with the support provided through this project and also wanted to pass along his words of gratitude. 

My original intent was to send the following song in my first official note as an attachment. However, I have no doubt that isn’t legal, and I haven’t done the necessary research to find out how to make it legal. So instead you get the words that have so much meaning to me within this project. Many of you probably know the song well, but I have to share the first three verses. (My kids even request the song as we’re making a pick-up somewhere in the area.) It has been our “babies of Juarez theme song” since the very birth of this venture. 

“The Blessing” by John Waller

Let it be said of us while we walked among the living
Let it be said of us by the ones we leave behind
Let it be said of us that we lived to be a blessing for life
Let it be said of us that we gave to reach the dying
Let it be said of us by the fruit we leave behind
Let it be said of us that our legacy is blessing for life

This day, you set life, you set death right before us
This day, every blessing and curse is a choice now
And we will choose to be a blessing for life
Let it be said of us that our hearts belonged to Jesus
Let it be said of us that we spoke the words of life
Let it be said of us that our heritage is blessing for life

Still from the bottom of my overflowing heart, thank you.

We collect diapers and formula